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Nate Burleson: Johnny Manziel’s still the man

Johnny Manziel AP

Johnny Manziel may not have won the starting quarterback job in Cleveland, but at least one member of the team’s receiving corps thinks that the future is still very bright for the first-round pick.

Nate Burleson said that Manziel’s extracurricular activities were not a problem for him because he has seen that Manziel “loves this sport and he wants to be great at it.” Burleson also thinks that a stint as a backup could make Manziel even better down the road.

“Johnny’s still the man. He’s still a really good quarterback. He’s an NFL-quality starting quarterback. … Johnny being the No. 2, as you want to call it, we got arguably the best No. 2 in the NFL,” Burleson said, via the Akron Beacon Journal. “Johnny will be successful in this league. He’ll have his opportunities. Regardless of how many chances he’ll get or waves of opportunities he gets, he’s going to take advantage of them. It’s not a bad thing for him to be the No. 2 [quarterback] Week One. He is a rookie, still has a lot to learn and to do as a professional and as a player when it comes to the playbook. He’s going to be all right. I’m a Johnny Football fan.”

Burleson’s support for Manziel doesn’t come at Brian Hoyer’s expense as he said he felt the team had two “winners” to choose from and praised Hoyer’s command of the offense. That command hasn’t been as evident to many others during the team’s preseason work, something that will have to change if Manziel is going to remain the No. 2 in Cleveland.

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72 Responses to “Nate Burleson: Johnny Manziel’s still the man”
  1. schmokes says: Aug 22, 2014 7:33 AM

    If you have 2 starting QB’s, you have none.

  2. succulentnipples says: Aug 22, 2014 7:40 AM

    Johnathon Football.

  3. gjdodger2 says: Aug 22, 2014 7:41 AM

    Just don’t take Johnny Football out for a late pizza run, Nate.

  4. succulentnipples says: Aug 22, 2014 7:41 AM

    The Johnathon Football.

  5. draconian1111 says: Aug 22, 2014 7:44 AM

    Okay, gotta give credit where do – Nate Burleson made news…….

  6. bubbybrisket says: Aug 22, 2014 7:45 AM

    Ryan Leaf wanted to “be great at it” as well.

  7. kingpel says: Aug 22, 2014 7:46 AM

    As soon as I heard he praised Hoyer too I realized this was all just a bunch of lip service.

  8. Eutaw's Finest says: Aug 22, 2014 7:48 AM

    Burleson should listen to his coaching staff. Hoyer is the starter by default. Why? Because, as Pettine said, NEITHER QB really stood out. They’ve both been pedestrian at best.

    What John Manziel (I refuse to give that d-bag his corny name) does have going for him is that Hoyer will be without Gordon, which essentially means his numbers will dip from expectations. Last year Gordon accounted for 38% of the passing yards by Browns QBs. That is a HUGE loss for any QB. But as we all know, the second Hoyer struggles? JM comes in and never goes back out. Shame the Browns weren’t smart enough to ship Hoyer out for some players of value instead of designating him for bench duty.

  9. eagleswin says: Aug 22, 2014 7:53 AM

    Hoyer hasn’t shown command of anything. Poise, yes. Command, no.

    Regardless, Hoyer’s going to get murdered behind that offensive line. Better him than the future of the franchise.

    Not denying that Manziel is not ready to be a quality starter at the beginning of this year but everyone knew that right? If all the analysts knew that it would take some time for Manziel to adjust at the draft, i assume the GMs knew it also.

  10. keltictim says: Aug 22, 2014 7:53 AM

    #shawtime

  11. bodycount99 says: Aug 22, 2014 7:56 AM

    Erroneous! Burleson hasn’t even practiced in weeks! He’s been riding the bike during practice and he told media in Detroit 2 weeks ago that he was looking forward to retiring next year. GO AWAY NATE, YOU’RE DONE!

  12. paychrisjohnson28 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:01 AM

    Go Johnny Go!

  13. snoop24 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:01 AM

    Go Johnny…… Go Johnny….Go Johnny

  14. ejm845 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:02 AM

    Why r we conceding the season already what a waste of time starting hoyer I guess they’ll wait till were 0 and 4 before manziel takes over and starts the future it’s stupid Johnny gives us best chance of success

  15. erock0129 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:06 AM

    Words if wisdom from a retired receiver. Go Browns.

  16. mysterytonite says: Aug 22, 2014 8:08 AM

    says the guy who himself shouldn’t be in the league.

  17. philipdebin says: Aug 22, 2014 8:08 AM

    Browns should sign Tebow and then create a 2 QB offensive formation. The whole media would ‘splode.

  18. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 22, 2014 8:10 AM

    Let him learn the play book more, get the play calls verbalized and down (17 word play calls are idiotic) (still think Shanny is a good play caller but jeez simplify the play calls).

    Not knowing the play calls or good grasp of play book and he still outperformed Hoyer.

    I say start Johnny Week 6 at home vs the Raiders. They will be 0-5 anyway.

  19. joewilliesshnoz says: Aug 22, 2014 8:12 AM

    What a waste of a draft choice.

  20. Straight Cash Homie says: Aug 22, 2014 8:13 AM

    Don’t expect Hoyer to throw many balls his way.

  21. dumbpollack says: Aug 22, 2014 8:14 AM

    He’s an NFL starting QB based on what? Is it the fact that he is too small, not athletic enough to run away from trouble on an NFL field, or has poor discipline? My only hope is that between ours and the Bills #1 pick next year we can find a quality QB. We don’t have one on the roster right now. Thanks again, Jimmy for demanding we “go get ‘em” when nobody else on the staff wanted him. This com artist has been nothing but trouble since buying the team. And “oh goody” next year he will jerk with 50 years of tradition and change our uniforms. Hey, if you knew anything about the fans of Cleveland you’d know we like the uniforms. What we’re tired off is losing and watching you Jerry Jones make the team even look line bigger fools. You want to change uniforms, go do it to your beloved Vols. Go home, carpet bagger!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. moralsoverpolitics says: Aug 22, 2014 8:19 AM

    a true teammate right there

  23. coffeeblack95616 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:20 AM

    Loving the sport doesn’t equate to working hard and making good choices to be great at the sport.

  24. rayjay9393 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:21 AM

    maybe.. but not so fast, Nate

  25. walkdog1343 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:22 AM

    Honestly, anyone that thinks Johnny has better command of the offense was just watching the games to see what they wanted to see. He can’t complete a pass further than 5 yards down the field. I was/am an optimist for him down the road, but Hoyer gives the Browns the best chance to win right now. I don’t understand why everyone overlooks the fact that Hoyer has only thrown 20 passes since a major knee injury. His decision making has been great; it’s been his timing and accuracy that has been the issue. Those things will come back with reps.

  26. qdog112 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:23 AM

    Sorry to say, Burleson seems off base. Like a person in an intimate relationship who knows his partner is cheating and everybody in town knows it, but he insists everything is cool.

    He’s in denial.

  27. isphet71 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:23 AM

    Oh, Nate. Love you man but you’ve always worn rose-colored glasses regarding your QBs.

  28. burfict's wrath says: Aug 22, 2014 8:24 AM

    Did anyone see how bad Pittsburgh looked last night? I’m thinking the browns start 1-0.

  29. RexCanCoach says: Aug 22, 2014 8:25 AM

    You know who is going to stink this upcoming season. The NY Giants.

  30. ickky says: Aug 22, 2014 8:26 AM

    Nate who?

  31. tubaplayingprof says: Aug 22, 2014 8:26 AM

    Isn’t Aloe Blacc the man?

  32. jerruhjones says: Aug 22, 2014 8:31 AM

    Let it go….Hoyer is the starter. Johnny can carry a clipboard for at least 1 season.

  33. george1859 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:31 AM

    What? No Johnny Football getting freight trained by an NFL linebacker? When he finally gets his shot and gets decleated and pancaked, his expression should make SI’s cover.
    In the immortal words of Bart Scott..
    Can’t wait!

  34. rutchaser says: Aug 22, 2014 8:36 AM

    Burleson is acting like these college girls that get their picture taken with Manziel.

  35. bucrightoff says: Aug 22, 2014 8:39 AM

    Third stringers in preseason were able to get inside his head. What do you think starters are going to do to him? And Johnny couldn’t even get away from those third stringers like he got away from guys in college. He’s like Tebow but less of a leader.

  36. athlete21ed says: Aug 22, 2014 8:42 AM

    lol…the best #2 in the NFL?! You’ve got the most hyped #2 in the NFL!! A career backup in Hoyer beat him out! Wheres Chris Carter when you need him…COME ON MAN

  37. jamezz23 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:45 AM

    We miss you here in Detroit, Nate. Class act 100%

  38. numba1wiscosportsfan says: Aug 22, 2014 8:49 AM

    k bro…

  39. rufustfireflyjr says: Aug 22, 2014 8:52 AM

    Got to give it to Burleson; he knows what to kiss and when

  40. youreinthejunglebaby says: Aug 22, 2014 8:54 AM

    Bwahahahahahahahahahaha

  41. reesesteel23 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:55 AM

    Lol the last sentence in his statement sums it up.

    “I’m a Johnny Football fan”

    We can tell

  42. 90lions81 says: Aug 22, 2014 8:56 AM

    gotta love Nate Burleson! He’s a real professional and all around good guy.

    LionBlood

  43. daburgher says: Aug 22, 2014 9:05 AM

    I think they have 2 back up qbs

  44. nizzledizzleshizzle says: Aug 22, 2014 9:06 AM

    yea…good luck with that

  45. dsimo says: Aug 22, 2014 9:07 AM

    Sorry, Nate. Teddy Bridgewater is the best No. 2 in the NFL right now.

  46. beattention says: Aug 22, 2014 9:15 AM

    No passes for him for awhile.

  47. abninf says: Aug 22, 2014 9:18 AM

    Yes, Burleson, but the people who get all their information about Manziel from the internet disagree.

  48. bassplucker says: Aug 22, 2014 9:20 AM

    Yeah, and Burleson still thinks he’s a legit #2 WR too.

  49. hailvictory44 says: Aug 22, 2014 9:21 AM

    Best 2nd string QB? I’m your huckleberry there Nate…let’s take a look, shall we?

    Definitely better than your boy Manziel (in no particular order):
    Vick, Hasselbeck, Cousins, Glennon, McCown, Hill.

    Probably better now than Manziel:
    Bortles, Bridgewater, Carr.

    I’m probably being generous here Nate, but that still puts 1/3 of the league’s 2nd stringers above your man crush.

  50. willnit says: Aug 22, 2014 9:21 AM

    For the love of God. Shut your mouth.

    Love,
    Minnesota, Seattle, and Detroit.

  51. harveyredman says: Aug 22, 2014 9:24 AM

    I love that Nate is standing up for the eventual starting QB on the team. Real good move.

    BUT, of the three QB’s taken in the first round this year – Manziel looks like he has the least upside. The thing that made him so special in College was his escapability. And in the NFL he is being rundown by 2nd string linebackers.

    Monday night, he ran a read-option play, where he lost a yard because he didn’t have the wheels to turn the corner. On another play he tried running away from the blitzing LB who ran him down from behind.

    I hope he does well. It’s good for the league when such a popular figure succeeds. But for now, he looks like the game got a little too big for him.

  52. kosarkid says: Aug 22, 2014 9:26 AM

    Yeah, Johnny doesn’t look good right now. But from never having a playbook to having to call plays 17 words long is going to take time to get used to. Call him a bust if he doesn’t look good in three years. Just let the kid learn and then see what he can do.

  53. indians4evr says: Aug 22, 2014 9:27 AM

    Does Nate Burelson still play football?

    Coach Pettine yesterday in a news conference didn’t sound to happy about him. Burelson if he, is lucky might find his way to the PUP. It did though, sound like Coach was close to cutting him.

  54. John Roc 65 says: Aug 22, 2014 9:41 AM

    Nate needs glasses.

    He can’t see that little tattoo on Johnny’s forehead that reads B.U.S.T.

  55. wtfru2 says: Aug 22, 2014 9:54 AM

    Nate Who?????

  56. jscruisen says: Aug 22, 2014 9:57 AM

    Who would give the washed up Nate Burleson any credibility! His washed up, lazy shell of a receiver self hasn’t even made it on the field in training camp yet!
    Johnny might indeed be the man, but one things for sure, Nate Burleson is not!!!

  57. samt1987 says: Aug 22, 2014 9:59 AM

    Atta boy Nate
    Go Irish

  58. codythao35 says: Aug 22, 2014 10:18 AM

    I think he meant Manziel is still the man who will be playing CFL in couple of years and the Browns will be drafting another qb or trading for one in a few years.

  59. bigd7387 says: Aug 22, 2014 10:26 AM

    Okay so Johnny is a “man” versus what? I would say Johnny is a spoiled little rich brat who happens to be a “man”. The only difference between him and Tebow is that Tebow won several games on a team with a good defense and above average receivers and running backs and O-Line. Johnny is playing for the Browns. I can’t remember what talking head said it but they see Cleveland trading Johnny to Jerry in Dallas next year before the draft and getting another QB flavor of the year from the college ranks. That I could actually see happening considering Cleveland’s ownership and Jerry’s love and need for a new QB.

  60. bengalskuta82 says: Aug 22, 2014 11:14 AM

    Johnny Clipboard, son the game is bigger than you. Hope you realize that by now.
    GoodLuck

  61. gettingpwned says: Aug 22, 2014 11:34 AM

    Why is Burleson relevant again? Outside of being opposite randy moss for a few years he’s done nothing but been overpaid.

  62. purpleguy says: Aug 22, 2014 11:36 AM

    Ah, I was beginning to miss the daily Nate Burleson quote. However, I then remembered the potentially devastating combination of Manziel’s hype and Nate’s gum-flapping propensity, and started to shudder in fear.

  63. granadafan says: Aug 22, 2014 11:41 AM

    Sounds like someone is kissing butt just to get some more balls thrown his way. Ole stonehands will drop them anyways.

  64. toybkshr says: Aug 22, 2014 11:53 AM

    You sure this guy wasn’t in the car with Levion Bell?

  65. metalman5150 says: Aug 22, 2014 11:57 AM

    Kirk Cousins said, what you talking about best no 2 in the game? What about me>?

  66. mwcarolina says: Aug 22, 2014 12:35 PM

    Best 2nd string QB? I’m your huckleberry there Nate…let’s take a look, shall we?

    Definitely better than your boy Manziel (in no particular order):
    Vick, Hasselbeck, Cousins, Glennon, McCown, Hill.

    Probably better now than Manziel:
    Bortles, Bridgewater, Carr.
    ————————————————————
    ok, best 2nd string QB, i dont know. i think Manziel is better than some like Hasselbeck (aged up), Hill, Luke McCown and Cousins, BUT Glennon is a young QB who i thought showed he’s better than Manziel and Vick (even though he’s aging) is still better than Manziel and then there’s OTHER rookies. one who SHOULD start in Bortles, while Carr and Bridgewater are unknown.

  67. conormacleod says: Aug 22, 2014 12:55 PM

    I honestly didn’t even know Burleson was still in the NFL. I thought he retired after last year.

    But besides that, it’s very clear Manziel has no grasp of an NFL playbook yet. Did you see that interview with Gruden? All Gruden asked was for Manziel to name a play. It took the kid 20 seconds to even name a single play from the Browns playbook. And when Gruden asked him what a certain play was called, he finished with “I think”.

    Maybe he grows up. Maybe he becomes good or even great. But he is an absolute train wreck off and on the field right now Cleveland.

  68. starchybunker says: Aug 22, 2014 1:04 PM

    “Johnny being the No. 2, as you want to call it”

    yes, Johnny being No. 2 is exactly how I’d call it…

  69. td40 says: Aug 22, 2014 1:26 PM

    walkdog1343 says:
    Aug 22, 2014 8:22 AM

    Honestly, anyone that thinks Johnny has better command of the offense was just watching the games to see what they wanted to see. He can’t complete a pass further than 5 yards down the field. I was/am an optimist for him down the road, but Hoyer gives the Browns the best chance to win right now. I don’t understand why everyone overlooks the fact that Hoyer has only thrown 20 passes since a major knee injury. His decision making has been great; it’s been his timing and accuracy that has been the issue. Those things will come back with reps.
    ———————————————
    Whoa, whoa, whoa walkdog! You’re applying logic, common sense, and realistic thinking to your statement. Manziel fans and jock-riders do not understand this. They don’t deal in reality. Nice try, though :)

  70. irishddddd says: Aug 22, 2014 1:34 PM

    If you think MANZIEL has looked good out there, and made NFL quality throws that won’t get picked off during the regular season, you need to ease off the kool aid just a bit..

  71. hyzers says: Aug 22, 2014 2:30 PM

    People can hate on Burleson all they want but the fact remains he was the Lions leading receiver last year before he broke his arm in week 6 or whatever it was. The guy can play.

  72. trapshoot says: Aug 22, 2014 4:04 PM

    Nonsense!

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